Thursday, November 4, 2010
Sparky Anderson was one of the best
Hall of Fame manager Sparky Anderson died on Thursday at the age of 76. He was born George Lee Anderson on February 22, 1934 in Bridgewater, South Dakota. Anderson was the first manager in major league history to win the World Series in both leagues. He went 2,194-1,834 (.545 win pct) in 26 seasons, and when he retired in 1995, he ranked third on the all-time wins list.
His 26 seasons as a major league manager is tied for seventh all-time with Gene Mauch, and trails only managers who are either in the Hall of Fame or still active.
In his first season as a manager in 1970, Anderson guided the Reds to the World Series after a 102-win regular season, winning the first four games of his managerial career. Later in his career, he would win the American League Manager of the Year award twice, in 1984 and 1987.
Anderson’s teams won five pennants and three World Series titles, including back-to-back championships with the Big Red Machine in 1975 and 1976. Then, only five years after taking over the Detroit Tigers, he won the World Series again in 1984 after beginning that season 35-5. Only six major league managers have won more World Series championships than Anderson did.
Anderson is the franchise leader in wins for the Cincinnati Reds (863) and for Detroit (1,331), the only manager that is the franchise wins leader for two different organizations.